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Posts Tagged ‘Mayor’

Pennington withdraws from Mayor’s race

Sad news. City Councilman Oliver Pennington announced he would end his candidacy for mayor on Friday, citing his wife’s health. The term-limited councilman, who represents west Houston’s District G, said in a press release he would complete his third and final two-year term, which runs through the end of this year. The 75-year-old retired attorney’s […]

Pothole progress

Hooray. Two months after Mayor Annise Parker called Houston’s pockmarked streets a “crisis situation” and pledged to clear a mounting pothole repair backlog, the city has reduced open work requests by about 1,000 despite a steep increase in calls for repairs. The welcome news for Houston drivers tired of dodging pesky potholes is tempered by […]

How many crimes does your police department solve?

Fewer than you think, unfortunately. Violent crime in America has been falling for two decades. That’s the good news. The bad news is, when crimes occur, they mostly go unpunished. In fact, for most major crimes, police don’t even make an arrest or identify a suspect. That’s what police call “clearing” a crime; the “clearance […]

Where’s Adrian?

I suspect a lot of people have been wondering the same thing. Standing on the cusp of what could easily be the most competitive mayoral race in Houston history many wonder what Adrian Garcia is waiting for. Still officially on the sidelines, the longtime cop, former councilman and current Harris County Sheriff appears to be […]

Yes, turnout stunk in HD124

What did you expect? How low can you go? Apparently 2.25 percent. That’s the share of registered voters who cast ballots Tuesday in the special election for Texas House District 124. According to unofficial results, less than 2,000 of the district’s 88,006 registered voters weighed in. If that number stands when the votes are certified, […]

Turner & Whitmire

No, not the latest buddy cop movie, just two old legislative friends helping each other out. Texas’ most senior state senator turned to the crowd during a September fundraiser for state Rep. Sylvester Turner and ribbed his friend and would-be Houston mayor. “My name is John Whitmire, and I’m Sylvester Turner’s state senator,” he said, […]

Uber officially departs San Antonio

As expected. Uber’s ride in the Alamo City ended Wednesday as the ride-share company has stopped operating within San Antonio city limits. The decision to end all operations in San Antonio stems from the city council’s vote to approve a series of proposed changes to policies that regulate the local ride-share industry. Those rules went […]

Council approves Memorial Park plan

Done deal. The plan, which could see up to $300 million invested, also would restore the park’s ecosystem, which was greatly harmed in the 2011 drought, through ambitious plans to add fire suppression and irrigation systems and improve drainage to end serious erosion problems in parts of the park. The plan was developed through months […]

What kind of Memorial Park do you want?

Council is set to vote on the Memorial Park Conservancy plan, whether you like it or not. Joe Turner does not want more drawings gathering dust on a shelf. Houston’s parks and recreation director inherited more than a few unrealized master plans when he was hired 10 years ago. Now he’s shepherding the most complex […]

Still unclear where One Bin For All stands

Your guess is as good as mine. The fate of the city’s cutting-edge “one bin” waste system that would feature a privately built, $100 million sorting facility is becoming increasingly uncertain, as sources familiar with the company proposals say there remain significant operational and financial concerns. It’s no secret that the One Bin review has […]

Endorsement watch: Pushback on the process

The early endorsement by the firefighters’ union – and now the Houston Police Officers Union – of Rep. Sylvester Turner for Mayor has ruffled some feathers. The Houston Police Officers’ Union on Tuesday followed their firefighter counterparts who on Monday endorsed Turner, a 25-year state representative who long has maintained close ties to first responders. […]

WaPo profiles Mayor Parker

Nothing we didn’t already know, but a nice story nonetheless. Annise Parker keeps a leather-bound journal on the desk in her wood-paneled office in City Hall. If it had a title, she says, it would be: “Would This Have Happened to Another Mayor?” Its pages are filled with her cursive script of the stories she […]

Endorsement watch: Firefighters for Turner

From the inbox: HOUSTON, March 23, 2015 – State Rep. Sylvester Turner has earned the endorsement of the Houston Professional Fire Fighters Association in this year’s mayoral race, the HPFFA said today. HPFFA President Alvin W. White, Jr. said 84 percent of voting fire fighters approved the recommendation of the HPFFA board of directors to […]

The Memphis pension cutting experience

In discussions about Houston’s pension liabilities, the city of Detroit is often trotted out as an analogy and cautionary tale. There’s another city that may be a more accurate comparison, and it’s offering an illustration right now of what might happen if things proceed as many candidates for local office and the Houston Chronicle would […]

Police officers’ pension fund speaks up

The firefighters’ pension fund is the one that gets all the attention, but it’s not the only one the city is responsible for. The Houston Police Officers Pension System (HPOPS) has sent a letter to the city reminding it that they have a deal that restricts what the city can request from the Legislature. Police […]

What if they threw an election and nobody ran?

Congratulations, Katy! The Katy City Council on Monday night canceled May’s municipal elections after no one sought to challenge the mayor and two other incumbents. The deadline to file to run was at the end of February. The only candidates to file were Mayor Fabol Hughes and council members Bill Lawton and Jimmy Mendez, from […]

Christie will not run for Mayor

From the inbox: Jack Christie announced this morning that he will run for a third term as the At-Large Five Member of Houston City Council. Christie stated, “Numerous people asked me to run for Mayor, which was incredibly flattering, but after careful consideration, I have decided to run for re-election. There are several great people […]

How many candidates are too many?

The Rivard Report brings up a point I hadn’t considered before. Candidates or their representatives arrived at City Council chambers Monday morning to draw lots to determine the order of name placement on the ballot. As candidates waited in the audience, the room seemed to be filled with equal parts anticipation and dread. It doesn’t […]

At Large comings and goings

Meet Atlas Kerr, who will be running in At Large #3 against CM Michael Kubosh. I am an accounting and finance double major at the University of Houston’s Bauer College of Business. I have in-depth knowledge over capital budgeting, debt/bond valuation, and capital asset price modeling. I am a registered volunteer instructor at the Women’s […]

Sources say Garcia is in for Mayor

I feel like I’ve read this story before. Harris County Sheriff Adrian Garcia has decided to run to become Houston’s next mayor and could announce his bid within the next month, according to multiple sources with firsthand knowledge of his plans. Garcia has sent signals over the past six months that he would join the […]

Council’s pension meeting

It was about what you’d expect. Many City Council members who attended a special meeting Friday to discuss Mayor Annise Parker’s controversial deal with the city’s firefighters pension called the gathering a success, despite two members walking out and breaking a quorum before a vote could be held to support or oppose the agreement. The […]

Costello makes his official entry

That makes him number five of some as yet unknown number to make that announcement. Houston City Councilman Stephen Costello pitched himself Monday as a no-frills, no-nonsense politician who would address the city’s problems like the engineer he is if voters elect him mayor this fall. Costello, a wonky at-large councilman who chairs the body’s […]

The pension deal

Not sure yet how I feel about this. Mayor Annise Parker and Houston’s firefighter pension trustees have reached a deal that would lower the city’s payments for three years, a move that would mark an abrupt reversal for the mayor. The announcement came late Thursday from the fire pension board, whose leaders for years have […]

McVey announces his candidacy

Another day, another Mayoral hopeful. Private equity executive Marty McVey said Thursday he would reinvigorate Houston’s international business ties if voters elected him mayor this fall. McVey said at the formal launch of his campaign he would usher in a new era of international investment in Houston, which he pledged to make a “visionary city.” […]

Uber and Lyft will leave San Antonio

The second time was not the charm. The revisions to the vehicles-for-hire ordinance, approved in a 8-2 vote, eased regulations the council had originally adopted in December and were meant to persuade Lyft and Uber to continue operating in San Antonio. But after the vote, Lyft and Uber said the revised policy was still too […]

Ethics Commission rejects Bell’s complaint

No go. The Houston Ethics Commission has ruled against mayoral candidate Chris Bell’s complaint that City Hall was letting Rep. Sylvester Turner start the race with a $900,000 head start in fundraising. […] Bell argues that Turner’s legislative account should not be able to transfer more than $10,000 to his mayoral account, the most that […]

King makes his official entry

Add Bill King to the “made his official announcement” list. In the middle of a noisy, torn-up west Houston street that he said epitomized Houston’s crumbling roads, Bill King launched his campaign for mayor Monday morning, pledging to return the city “back to basics.” King, a former Houston Chronicle columnist and a mayor of Kemah, […]

Economic segregation in cities

From Wonkblog: Concentrated poverty is one of the biggest problems facing cities today, as more of the urban poor become isolated in neighborhoods where the people around them are poor, too. Growing economic segregation across cities, though, is also shaped by a parallel, even stronger force: concentrated wealth. A new analysis from Richard Florida and […]

Who would be Sheriff if Adrian Garcia runs for Mayor?

A Republican, for sure. Beyond that, we don’t know. County officials are preparing for Garcia to resign as sheriff, which he is required to do under the Texas Constitution if he chooses to run for mayor of Houston, as he is expected to do. The County Attorney’s office last month circulated a memo to Harris […]

Cities and counties push back on state meddling attempts

They’ve got their work cut out for them. The mayors of Texas’ largest cities on Monday pushed back against an initiative by state lawmakers to place new revenue caps on local communities as a way to answer conservatives’ demands to cut property taxes. As the city CEOs who represent a third of Texas’ population threw […]

Sylvester Turner announces his entry into the Mayor’s race

What we’ve all known about for months is now official. State Rep. Sylvester Turner announced his candidacy for Houston mayor today, formally adding the name of an influential lawmaker with deep ties to the African-American community to the growing field of contenders. For 25 years, Turner has risen through the ranks of the state House […]

San Antonio may try again on vehicles for hire

Very interesting. Key players at City Hall are crafting an eleventh-hour amended ordinance to stop Uber from leaving San Antonio, 10 days after the rideshare company announced plans to end service here if one of the nation’s most restrictive ordinances goes into effect on March 1. The ordinance passed by Council in December, say supporters […]

Ivy Taylor enters SA Mayor’s race

It’s on. Mayor Ivy Taylor declared her candidacy for mayor Monday in an exclusive interview with the San Antonio Express-News. Taylor, who was appointed mayor last summer by her council colleagues, said that she made the decision after significant thought and prayer and consultation with trusted advisers. The mayor said she’s been “honored and excited, […]

On Council and charters

Council continues considering charter changes. (Go ahead, say that five times fast.) The Charter Review Committee’s proposal would allow for six council members to add an item to the agenda for consideration by the full City Council. Under the current city charter, the mayor decides what gets to be discussed during the weekly council meetings. […]